When the Society for Linguistic Anthropology was discussing a site redesign, I volunteered to be an advisor. When they started talking about paying thousands of dollars to a web designer who designed static sites which failed to conform to web standards, lacked an easy to use administrative backend and contained no integrated blog or rss feeds, I offered to do the site for free.
Well, you get what you pay for. The new SLA website may not be pretty, but it does have an RSS feed!
The site is very much in beta, and we decided to simply replicate much of the content form the old site before adding any new features, so stay tuned for some exciting developments down the road. For those who are interested, the site is just a WordPress install with a standard theme – nothing more. I think it took less than an hour to get it up and running. The hard part is migrating the old content over to the new site and educating and training SLA folks about how the new site works. Fortunately I have an assistant helping me with all that, and the SLA folks have been incredibly supportive.
One exciting thing about the new AAA website is that it will offer better content management systems for sections who want to host their sites on aaanet, but considering how long it takes the AAA to roll out changes to the site, we decided to do it ourself. Hosting is provided by Blue Host for less than $7 a month (including the domain name). Having gotten burned by discount webhosts in the past I was a little apprehensive, but so far we’ve been quite happy with them. They offer one-click WordPress installs via Fantastico, which made setting things up that much easier.
(NOTE: That “edit this” link you see at the bottom is only visible to registered administrators. The site is not some kind of a wiki – but it does make it easier to make changes on the fly. WordPress is also what powers Savage Minds.)